As was mentioned here, UFC are currently in the process of implementing a new social media strategy. Notably, the company will regularly award 3 bonuses of $5000: the fighter who manages to gain the most followers per quarter; the the fighter who has the highest percentage increase in followers in a quarter, and the fighter who manages to come up with the most "creative" tweets (whatever that means.) Fighters are also being encouraged to post videos on Youtube. You see, this is all part of the UFC’s new to make their fighters "more accessible to fans" and separate them from other sports like the NFL, where players often come off lofty and out-of-reach to most fans. This may, on the surface, sound like a good idea; wrestling fans, however, know that that their favourite stars and social media do not always mix. In fact, there are numerous examples of wrestlers behaving foolishly on all types of social media and proving there is such a thing as too much accessibility- something UFC should take note of in the months ahead. In the spirit of things, here are the top five wrestling personalities who, for the sake of modesty, taste, their sanity and everyone else's, really should never go near Twitter, Facebook and/or Youtube for the rest of their natural lives.
As I mentioned here , Melina’s incoherent ramblings on Twitter seriously damaged her career and have given fans ample evidence of her rumoured crazyness and reputation as a locker room cancer. Earlier this year, she was turned heel and given a renewed push in a program with Natayla, with the hope being it would invigorate her stalling career. Things went wrong when, after an argument with boyfriend John Morrison, an emotional and erratic Melina took to her Twitter account to tell the world about her relationship problems.
"Getting dumped must be the new trend this new years. The feeling sucks. I’d rather be baby face and b in love than heel & dumped. I wish I could b perfect enough. I wish I was him. I truly wanted to be the perfect woman for you. Good night & happy new year life isn’t perfect buy oh well."
WWE (who don’t want their stars blabbing to the world about their personal problems, preferring them to remain larger-than-life super-cool superheroes) were angry, and she was quickly jobbed out the next week and her profile sunk even further in the weeks and months afterwards. To make matters worse, she later claimed the neferious wrestling twitter hacker had snuck into her account and left the embarrassing messages. No one with more than one brain cell bought it.
Melina’s spaced out and surreal Youtube videos are also fascinating viewing: over the past year Ms Perez has become obsessed with Skittles. Yes, Skittles. She shows up in the videos, smiling and bleary-eyed, clutching a bag of giant Skittles, is usually chewing on Skittles, shows off her art (made out of Skittles, of course) and, finally, begs fans to send her more Skittles.
Actually, come to think of it, nevermind social media, she probably needs to stay away from Skittles too.
4) Jeff Jarrett
One thing becomes abundantly clear after you’ve been following the TNA Founder for a decent length of time on his Twitter: the man is simply obsessed with posting inspirational quotes. Frankly, he tweets little else, and must carry a big book of motivational quotes with him wherever he goes, allowing him to churn out these little bits of wisdom every chance he gets. Believe in yourself and stay strong, hard work pays off, always hope…yada yada yada. Aside from being lazy tweeting, the real embarrassment sets in when Jeff tweets quotes that are often the complete opposite of how he, and others, have run TNA: a few months ago Jeff caused a decent amount of sniggering amongst journalists and fans when he tweeted the following quote from Albert Einstein: "The definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Yes, the man who founded a company that has become famous for never learning from their mistakes, hated by fans for continually returning to same ideas that have failed them and lost them money over and and over again, and sticking with the same incompetent booker for years despite his abysmal job performance, felt the need to remind us that we shouldn’t repeat failed ideas. "One thing is certain in life…CHANGE" writes Jeff, as him, and everyone else in TNA, remains firmly entrenched in the 90s and frustratingly refuse to get with the times. There are Goldfish with more self-awareness than this man.
Frankly, Jeff’s inspirational quotes only inspired me to Unfollow him. Never again will the TNA founder darken my twitter feed with lame and ultimately useless bits of advice like "The man who wins, is the man who thinks he can" and "You can only succeed by failing". And, as the old wrestling fan proverb goes: "Not giving Jeff Jarrett the time of day is the true path to happiness."
More after the cut...
3) Jeff Hardy
Look, Jeff Hardy has problems, we know. Lord, do we know. Of course, when stories of his erratic and unreliable behaviour inevitably get out, Jeff’s attempts to defend himself on his twitter, almost always do more harm than good. After Against All Odds (where he was almost stripped off the title after he showed up in a worrisome condition) and rumours of TNA allowing him to wrestle impaired before leaked Jeff wrote this on Twitter:
AllThaTalkAboutLastSunday....forThoseOfYouThatBelievedThoseWords...F***OU!!!!SoWrong...SoWrong!!!!!I'm bustingMyAss2 helpTNA...Period!!
ThaSadThingIs...I probablyKnowThaFool thatLeakedThatBogusInfo...oneMoreF***YOU!!
Yes: Jeff attempted to convince us he was not an erratic and crazy drug user, by tweeting like…an erratic and crazy drug user.
Ever wonder what it would have been like if the Von Erich family had Twitter accounts and Facebooks back in the eighties? Well, Matt and Jeff Hardy seem to be doing their very best to answer that question.
While her output hasn’t been nearly as much as the others, Tiffany, real name Taryn Terrell, makes it in because her unadvised comments on Twitter may have done permanent damage to her husband Drew McIntyre, currently languishing in the Raw undercard after his romance angle with Kelly was suddenly dropped with no resolution. In fact, recent reports confirm that the main reason Drew’s status in WWE has fallen so low isn’t simply his blandness, utterly abysmal acting skills or inability to get over. No, it was in large part due to these these comments from his wife on her twitter in December when asked about the possibility of a WWE return (Tiffany had been released after being arrested for assaulting her husband a few months earlier).
"No…If I have to sleep with someone in power to keep or continue progressing in my job, I’d rather be poor. @Marcus_R: @TarynTerrell Do you think you’ll ever return to WWE?"
Yikes. Nevermind a personality, Drew may also need a divorce. Tiffany wasn’t actually saying anything that wasn’t already heavily rumoured or strongly suspected (and former diva Shelly Martinez backed up Tiffany’s remarks on her twitter: "There was no surprise in what Tiffany said; simply reality") but in the highly political, petty world of WWE such comments had the potential to be lethal to her husband’s career. Especially after they became well-publicised and did the rounds on the news sites. After a few hours, Tiffany realized too. She deleted the salacious remarks, and explained:
"I'm deleting a certain text because it's being taken the wrong way. It was certainly not talking about anyone or any incident. Just that I've worked many jobs in which the casting couch has existed and I refuse to ever take part in that. so it was a generalized statement of companies I've worked for, which none of you know what companies they were; and It was not about wwe. so I apologize if it was taken out of context and reads differently than what I meant. Have a fabulous day Tweet World!"
Yes: so even though she was explicitly asked about WWE in the tweet that caused all the fuss, she wasn’t actually talking about WWE. Okay, that’s about as believable as the existence of the nefarious wrestling twitter hacker.
Problems also emerged later when she sensationally announced she was leaving Drew after finding what she thought were incriminating pictures and proof he was cheating on her ("I truly loved him with all my heart" she tweeted). For a reason that only she could explain she also posted the pictures on her twitter for the world to see, implicating one other (also married) superstar too. Later she erased her entire account. It’s back up now, though, and judging by what she’s saying and her profile picture, her and Drew are still very much together and she's acting like there were no problems to begin with. Hmmm…for the sake of his career, I think Drew should try and keep his wife off Twitter.
1) Matt Hardy
Well, this one is obvious. Social Media is the worst thing that ever happened to Matt Hardy. And vice- versa. Let’s face it: over the past few years, Matt has ruined his reputation and squandered any goodwill amongst fans and wrestlers with his rambling tweets, odd videos (in which he often appeared intoxicated) and apparent obsession with erasing any privacy he has left. He also became obsessed with grapes. Although unlike Melina and her beloved Skittles, he hasn’t tried to make a grape-filled mural (yet). Colt Cabana would later mock Hardy and say, "I will never look at grapes..and not think of Matt Hardy." Hardy also came up with an alter ego called "Matthew". "Matthew" rebelled, burned money (something him and Dixie Carter have in common, then) and was presented as the "new, improved" version of Matt. Though "Matthew" couldn't cut good main event promos either, sadly.
Indeed, Matt became so heavily linked with social media of all types, more so than any other wrestler today, TNA saw fit to include clips of the Facebook logo in his entrance video upon his debut for them. Matt himself would tout his role in bringing Twitter and Facebook to wrestling; and in the middle of his mini-feud with Sean Morley, revelled in his superiority over the Canadian by pointing out that he and best friend Shane Helms had considerably more Twitter followers than Morley did ("I have 157,000 followers...he has 1000!").
Prior to his exit from WWE last year (when his extremely strange behaviour was at its zenith), people asked: Is he crazy? Is he on drugs? Or is he simply Brian Pillman with a blackberry? Those questions were never answered conclusively. But, thankfully, no-one seems to care much anymore either: Matt has slid into complete irrelevance in TNA and Zack Ryder has seemingly taken over as the social media king. And as a bonus, Ryder usually appears coherent, non-crazy and non grape-eating in his videos too.
It's almost hard to believe their was a time we thought Matt was normal. Oh well: The year 2000 was a much more innocent time.